Wednesday, July 6, 2011

07.05.11 Norwood-Young America, MN

Thunderstorms developed along a stationary front draped nearly over the Twin Cities metro area during the late afternoon into the evening hours.


Radar showing the thunderstorms over the metro.  Loop is between 6 and 7:30 PM. Click to enlarge.


As I left work for the day around 5:30 PM, I checked RadarScope on my phone and saw storms popping right overhead.  Walking out the door, rain was falling, and I noticed the billowing cumulonimbus clouds off in the distance towards the north from Wayzata.  The storms over Anoka County produced a waterspout over Coon Lake at approximately 5:45 PM.  Temperatures managed into get into the upper 80s despite the persistent cloud cover most of the day, so that provided the battle zone for the cool and warm air mass clash.  Heading home, I decided to head out on an impromptu storm chase, and picked up on the storm cell going through Carver County since it would be a shorter drive.  After stopping in Shakopee to pick up some dinner at Culver’s, I headed out on US-212 towards Norwood-Young America.  Once I arrived in town around 7 PM, I took Carver County Highway 33 south of town where I caught up with the storm.  It produced this rain shaft that was being reflected by the sun from behind.  Even spotted a rainbow right next to it as I got a little bit closer.  I’m glad no one reported this as a tornado, because it wasn’t rotating at all.



Another view of the rainbow with the rain behind it:


The storm didn’t seem to strengthen during the duration of the chase up to this point, and it was only producing heavy rains and some gusty winds in the core of the storm.  With that in mind, I decided to call it a day, and headed towards Minnesota Highway 25, where I met up with US-169 in Belle Plaine.  In Belle Plaine, I took the north US-169 exit towards home.  Heading into Shakopee, I was welcomed back with a nice looking cumulonimbus cloud off to the east from US-169:



It was a fun, little unexpected chase.  I love smaller storms such as this, because it’s easier to get better aquatinted with the road system in areas that I normally don't drive through since my mind is not distracted with extra tasks (observing wind readings, making sure video is working, playing around with the radio, submitting reports, etc.) during a severe weather situation.  Who needs an atlas when you have all the local back roads stored in the head?!

Total Reports: 0 (no severe weather witnessed)


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